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Best available tree on Duolingo

Question is simple: how do you rate courses you've tried out? In terms of depth, arrangement, diversity, vocabulary and so on, which one is the best? Or the worst?

Thanks in advance. Helpful responses will be rewarded by bitcoins..ehm, by lingots :-)

December 11, 2017


  1. German for English speakers: many skills and words, and challenging sentences.
    I am learning both German and English in this course (my mother tongue is Dutch)

  2. The extra "Overview of grammar explanations" for the courses "Dutch for English speakers" and "English for Dutch speakers" are excellent. Every course should have such a high-quality overview.
    . Overview of grammar explanations https://www.duolingo.com/comment/25020107
    . Overzicht van Uitleg Grammatica https://www.duolingo.com/comment/2171737

  3. Unfortunately, I am not in the test group for the updated the course "Dutch for English speakers". I read it was a very good update.

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The German tree is very good, and people usually praise the Norweigan tree too.

I did Spanish, that is pretty good, but I find that its reverse "English for Spanish" is even better, and much longer.


I have only finished two trees: EN->ES and EN->JP. I think EN->ES is a great course, which have good coverage of grammar and vocabulary. After finishing this course and keep practicing, I can do some easy conversation with my mexican neighbors. However, I cannot say the same for EN->JP. The vocabulary, the grammar, and the sentences are all far from practice.(Of course, because EN->JP course is still in beta, and Japanese is much harder than Spanish according to FSI).


So far, I thought the German was the best.


I've done Dutch, French, Swedish and Norwegian. Hard to say, I like them all, but I think Norwegian impressed me with its breadth. It also has the highest number of words as far as I know. Dutch V2.0 seems big as well, I'm actually still working on the revised version.

Given how big pain the verbs are in French, I think the French tree should have more verb drills.


I've completed the French and Korean trees (from English), and out of the two I would say the French course is slightly better. It allows you to practice your speaking and listening skills, whereas the Korean course does not. Of course, the Korean course is still in Beta at this stage so I hope the course contributors will consider adding this feature in the near future.


The Norwegian tree is absolutely amazing! It's very long, and I it has over 3000 words. that was one of the sentences in the course

It is also amazing because it is just funny it has SO many references to all sorts of things, including game of thrones, animal farm, 1984, bands/ musical artists, and more! On top of that, it just has random funny (and sometimes sad) sentences. like Crime fell after the chicken became prime minister and My wife doesn't love me as well as various random sentences involving canadians throughout the course. The mothers had prejudices against Canadians, The party is exclusively for Canadians, and more!


That sounds wonderful. Cultural references, George Orwell, Game of Thrones, Canadian jokes (possibly South Park influence?). I like that!

Could you give me your opinion about German course, please? I have got some experience with German under my belt and I am willing to add another language(s) to my attempt with Spanish. That is whence came the question on a best tree :-)


The Portuguese tree for English speakers is so buggy. I'm a Portuguese-native speaker and even reporting the erros nothing seems to be fixed :(. But I have to mention the English tree for Portuguese Speakers. It's incredible, there are some bugs, but nothing like the Port-for-Eng tree.


Thanks for your tips.

My EN-PT is completed.

Because of 14 filled club slots, I had to start the PT-DE German reverse tree, before the PT-EN reverse tree.

Can anybody compare PT-DE vs PT-EN?


Norwegian for English-speakers is very good, it's extremely long and the grammar is explained thouroughly. Italian for English-speakers, however, isn't as good because the grammar isn't always explained, so you sort of have to figure out things for yourself.


Of the five trees I've done (ES, PT, NL, RU, and IT for English), Dutch was head and shoulders above the rest. Russian and Spanish are both quite good, but Spanish is too short, and Russian gets difficult a little fast.

Portuguese is below them for having a number of weird sentences with vaguely-defined "bureaucratic" words, and Italian is by far the worst of the group for its lack of good notes & tips along with truly bad text-to-voice.

  • 1637

Chinese, even in beta, is the best (out of those I learn). It gives really useful vocab and sentences, and the difficulty of skills is rising with reasonable pace (I've passed ca. 2/3 of the tree for the moment)
German from English is very good, but the difficulty of the skills is quite uneven.

Hungarian was strongly criticized for it's ...er... rather uncommon humor and oh-so-complicated phrases, but, while re-doing skills, I can see that the exercises are becoming more reasonable, both in difficulty and in content


Sorry for "necroing" this thread, I couldn't find a similar current one.

The point I wanted to make is that, when comparing trees, it makes a huge difference whether you use the desktop site or mobile app. I've been incredibly impressed with the French tree, with its tips, stories, and especially its instructive replies when you make a mistake. I had been trying to learn Hebrew, but got distracted by the French because it just seemed so much better put together. I mean Hebrew didn't even have Tips!...

Except that it does, and I had no idea they were there until I logged in on the desktop site. There is nothing at all to indicate they're there in the mobile app. For the world's leading language site this seems like an extraordinary oversight.

Is there anything else I've been missing while sitting on the train with my mobile?


I got most of the Spanish and Italian trees so far; I'm still struggling with French. I've heard great things about the Portuguese tree, but I haven't completed it personally.


In order:

  1. Portuguese, Spanish (Duolingo staff seems to have put some extra "love" into it but it's a rather short tree) and Italian

  2. German: holds you hands a bit too much / a bit forced at times. I.e. it tries to force you to use capitals (which I hate), sometimes throwing the same word at you 3 times in exercices seemingly as a way to try to force you to use capitals. I'm not the biggest fan of diacritics - but OK, they do somewhat have a purpose - but the capitalization serves absolutely no purpose at all. When something is solely done because of convention without any practical use, it can go to hell as far as I'm concerned.

  3. French: tries to teach you English, has several artificial splits in meaning and it also was the most inconsistent of all courses I've done (if something can be solved by method A and B, sometimes it only accepts method A, sometimes only method B and sometimes both). Perhaps it has improved by now.

  • 1637

German from English doesn't insist on capitalization

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